Sixers Coach Doc Rivers stated that he and Ben Simmons had a pleasant conversation following the trade that sent the wandering point guard to Brooklyn in an interview on ESPN’s “The VC Show with Vince Carter.” Additionally, Rivers stated that he doesn’t think his contentious remark made following Game 7 of the Sixers-Hawks series in 2021 had anything to do with Ben Simmons’ boycott of the previous campaign.
When asked if Ben Simmons could be the point guard of a championship team, Rivers famously replied, “I don’t know the answer to that.
Rivers continued, “Obviously, he struggled at the free-throw line, and that had a role in this series. “There is no denying that. We have work to do, but I still have faith in him. It will be necessary for us to work hard in the gym and move forward.
One of two after-game remarks made by Rivers was viewed by many in the NBA community as the final straw that severed the connection between the player and the team.
When describing how the momentum changed when Ben Simmons missed an open layup that would have knotted the score at 88, Joel Embiid was significantly more critical without mentioning Simmons:
That evening in June 2021, Embiid admitted, “I’ll be honest, I thought the turning point was just we got an open shot and we made one free throw. I don’t know how to explain it, but I thought the tipping point was just that.”
On Tuesday, Rivers told VC that the reason Simmons left Philadelphia had nothing to do with his remarks and everything to do with a growing list of complaints the player had about the team. Although he did not elaborate, it appeared that the relationship between Ben Simmons and Embiid was the key factor in the situation.
Ben’s desire to depart had nothing to do with that one comment, according to Rivers. “Alright? I’ll just say it. Ben told me a number of things that had already transpired before I arrived, and they have now been made public. My continued belief that it shouldn’t have been sufficient to wish to depart irritated me. I informed Ben that I simply didn’t. I continued to tell him that. You don’t want to leave a team for this reason. You figure all of this out. We have spoken once because they weren’t resolved. We had one decent conversation, however it wasn’t a lengthy one.
Rivers claimed that Simmons started the conversation, which he believed was admirable. After the February trade, Simmons said that he had called some other Sixers players, but not Embiid.
Ben contacted me later, which I thought was amazing, and we had a good conversation, but the point is that he was already leaving, and because of the way I’m made, I firmly think that we can make this work with Ben and Jo and the team, even though 99 percent of others don’t. Coaches must take that action.
Is Ben Simmons coming back to Philadelphia?
Ben Simmons is anticipated to complain to the 76ers.
Given the financial loss Simmons had during his turbulent finish in Philadelphia, such complaint has long been anticipated. However, the timing of it coincides with his first visit back to the city, which should make Thursday’s game much more heated.
Rivers expressed his want for Simmons to succeed in Brooklyn.
“I want the youngster to succeed. I don’t feel anything negative about him. He did nothing improper to me. I honestly really just want what most guys want. Now that they are not on my squad, I want to kick all of their butts. That’s my competitive side, but as fellow humans, I believe we should all want Ben and all these individuals to succeed.
Since Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving’s futures are still uncertain, Simmons has, of course, taken on a more prominent role for the Nets organisation recently. He attended the New York Liberty game at Barclays Center on Tuesday night, and last week, when F.C. Barcelona visited the HSS Training Center as part of a promotional trip, he served as the chief Nets greeter.
Did Ben Simmons win the grievance?
Simmons expressed his “disagreement” with the team’s doctors’ ability to assess and confirm his mental health. Despite attempts by both parties to settle the dispute amicably, Wojnarowski reports that the negotiations failed to produce a solution, which prompted the filing of the grievance.